Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The Packers Will Be Fine Without Favre

The news Packer fans never wanted to hear finally broke Tuesday morning, when Brett Favre, the greatest icon in Packer history (yes I said greatest), retired after 17 years of playing the game he loves. Some fans refuse to believe it, but it is time to start looking at it because training camp will come sooner than you think and when #4 isn't at Packer camp it really is going to set in. While my other blogging friends are talking about his legacy and where he ranks in history, I am going to talk about the future (and a little on his legacy). As much as people don't want to believe it or think about it, the future for the Green Bay Packers without Favre is very bright. They have a ton of young talent on both the offensive and defensive side of the football, plus Aaron Rodgers, the man thought to be the front runner for the starting job, has learned under one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history for the past three years. While Alex Smith got thrown into the fire right away, Rodgers got to sit and learn which will ultimately make him a better quarterback than Smith will ever be. The Packers won't really lose a step, you just will never see the #4 be worn on anyone again.

My thoughts on Favre's legacy
My lasting memory of Brett Favre will not be the interception he had to end his career, nor will it be of his Super Bowl 31 win. I won't remember for his 442 touchdown passes or his 288 interceptions. What I will remember is how he played the game. How he played all his games like it was his last. He enjoyed playing the game just like he did in high school. What impressed me more than his love of the game was his drive not to quit. He played through injury, through sickness, and even through death. He played 275 straight games including the playoffs, a feat that will never be touched. People may remember him for his preformace on Monday night against the Raiders not 24 hours after his dad died. Others may remember some of his record breaking games. The game I will remember, which is not the most memorable by any means, was this year against the Kansas City Chiefs where Favre was trying to get his first career win against K.C. The Chiefs were 4-3 on a two game winning streak with Green Bay heading into Arrowhead Stadium as one of the hottest teams in the NFL at that point. With five minutes to go up 22-16, I thought the Chiefs had it in the bag. Then Favre throws a bullet to Greg Jennings over the middle for a 60 yard touchdown pass. It shocked me and after that I knew the Pack weren't going to lose. After that game the Chiefs started to tank and I soon became a huge supporter of Green Bay making it all the way to the Super Bowl. Unfortunately he fell just short of that feat. Through it all one things for certain, whether you are a Packer fan or not, everyone will miss Brett Favre.

Packer Fans Need To Stay Supportive
If Packer fans aren't careful I can see them becoming like last years Miami Dolphin team in just a couple of years. After Dan Marino retired the Dolphins flirted with the playoffs for a few years then they all of a sudden fell into a rut of being one of the worst teams in the National Football League for the past couple of years. Jay Fielder wasn't Dan Marino and I think Dolphin fans didn't realize it. Rodgers has huge shoes to fill in place of Favre, and Rodgers probably won't put up Favre like numbers for his career. There is only one Brett Favre and as hard as it is to move on, the Packer fans need to start thinking of life without #4. Congrats on a great career Brett.

*Since this blog was done today in honor of Brett Favres Retirement, there will not be one on Thursday.


Sportsattitude said...

I was caught off guard by the announcement of Favre's retirement as I assumed he would be back after such a great year. That being said, I am glad he is going out as a winner after a stellar final season. The Packers have a good young squad but I do have concerns that their QB situation is not quite as promising. I would not be surprised if they drafted a QB high or moved to acquire a quality veteran backup who could serve as a starter in a pinch. I don't know if Aaron is the answer - time will tell - but today is about wishing one of the great players in NFL history all the best as he ends one chapter of his life and begins a new one.

Josh said...

I was also very shocked by his decision as well. I don't think the Packers or the fans should worry at all. You have a what could be very promising Aaron Rodgers who is going to take over your franchise. As long as the fans stay supportive, I believe they will be just fine.

R. LeBaron said...

I thought for sure he would come back for one more year. He probably made the right decision for himself and his family. However, I wouldn't be too surprised if he missed it and decided to come back at some point (soon, because of his age) if Rodgers struggles. If Rogers is rolling, he probably wouldn't interfere even if he wanted to un-retire for a season.